Free Gaza rally in Toronto across from the Israeli consulate

Pro Palestinian protesters gathered across the street from the Israeli consulate for the All Out For Gaza rally. While members of the Jewish Defense League and Pro Israeli supporters blared music and danced, the Palestine supporters from all backgrounds spoke of bringing an end to the violence in Gaza.

Side by Side

 

Getting bleary-eyed for the Beer Guide

Warm weather hits Toronto and suddenly it’s that part of the year to partake in Canada’s favourite pastime. Well maybe the second favourite pastime next to hockey. I’m talking about sitting on a beautiful patio on a sunny day, doing some people watching and swigging back on local craft beer or imported brews. My mission for NOW Toronto‘s annual Beer Guide, and I chose to accept it, was to hit up some local bars and photograph the spaces, beers and staff that make our summer days and nights just that much better.

No photographers, but many beers, were harmed during the taking of these photographs.

The Town Crier Pub & Halfway Beer House 07

Rising up at World Pride in Toronto

LGBTQ communities from around the globe converged on Toronto, host city of World Pride 2014. Toronto is the first North American city to host the international event and this year’s theme was Rise Up. The Sunday parade, which is normally quite lengthy, lasted an astonishing 6 hours. Hot and sweaty Pride revelers were treated to a rain shower later in the evening that produced a double rainbow over The Village. It was a magical and fitting closing ceremony to cap off a week’s worth of festivities.

World Pride 115

World Pride Dyke March in Toronto

Lady lovers rejoice! The World Pride Dyke March in Toronto was bigger and more Sapphic than ever. Dykes on Bikes and crochet banners by Craft Action TO, led the way up Yonge Street on an alternative route from previous years. The barrier free march had the crowds cheering and joining in on the hot, sweaty, gay old time.

Dyke March 32

Toronto’s annual Trans March becomes a first for World Pride

Since 2009, Toronto‘s Trans Pride Rally & March has been a community based safe space for Trans identified people and their allies to  congregate, march, celebrate and protest. With the international community coming together this year for World Pride, Toronto became the first host city in North America and the first to have a Trans Pride gathering. The march route went all the way down Yonge Street from Bloor to Yonge-Dundas Square where a concert featuring Trans artists helped kick off the Pride weekend.

Trans Pride

The Stop’s Night Market fundraiser: Come hell and high water

The Stop Community Food Centre’s annual Night Market fundraiser proceeded despite a torrential downpour in Toronto. 45 vendors served up delicious food and drink in the Honest Ed’s back alley to raise money for the local not-for-profit community food group. Foodies lined up bearing umbrellas, dollar store raincoats and stomachs hungry for some of Toronto’s top nibbles and drinks. Those willing to stick out the flying tents and weather drama were eventually treated to some sunshine and good eats.

Good Food Sanctuary

World Naked Bike Ride: Putting the fun between their legs

Hundreds of cyclists put the ‘fun between their legs’ for the 10th annual World Naked Bike Ride. Unsuspecting pedestrians and motorists were a little more than surprised to see the naked rolling spectacle on two wheels take over downtown streets. For the most part, the bare all bike rally was met with cheers and smiles while purveying a message of less dependence on oil and gas.

Thrill Seekers

Bike to Work Day kicks off Bike Month in Toronto

Cyclists in the city kicked off Bike Month this morning with the annual Bike to Work commute. Biking commuters came from all areas of the city to converge on Yonge and Bloor and continue their way together down to Nathan Phillips Square where a pancake breakfast was enjoyed by all. The moving mass on wheels was led down Yonge by mayoral hopefuls Olivia Chow, Karen Stintz and David Soknacki surrounded by various members of Toronto City Council.

Police Escort

Doors Open Toronto: TTC’s Russell Carhouse & University of Toronto’s Knox College

It’s my favourite time of year when over 150 locations across Toronto throw open their doors to the  curious masses for Doors Open Toronto. Behind the scenes tours are given through buildings of architectural, mechanical and intellectual significance, that aren’t always accessible to the public. This year we were treated to vintage streetcars and a TTC ride at the Russell Carhouse. People were also treated to the melodic sounds of the Wolff Organ at Knox College‘s chapel on the University of Toronto campus.

Taking the Wheel

Smoking and protesting at the Global Marijuana March

Intermittent rain showers couldn’t hold back the tide of thousands of soggy pot smokers at this year’s Global Marijuana March. The weather only slightly diminished the number of pot activists who held the streets for over an hour and a half before returning to Queen’s Park for their big 4:20 moment. Toronto‘s GMM is considered to be the biggest in the world.

Wegalize Leed

Toronto’s May Day of Action

Toronto‘s annual May Day rally on May 1st to celebrate International Worker’s Day, marched from Allen Gardens to take over the intersection of Yonge and College Streets. Participating groups included No One is Illegal, OCAP and the Communist Party of Canada to name a few. May Day marches are for honouring communities and continuing the fight against poverty and capitalism.

Red Handed

Up in smoke at the annual 420 rally

Toronto’s Yonge-Dundas Square was a pot smoker’s paradise for the 8th annual 420 rally. Marijuana activists and recreational users hot boxed the downtown locale under the watchful eye of Bong Man and a perimeter of police officers. Thousands of joints were passed around the puffing crowd as a cloud descended at 4:20pm. Many brownies were harmed in the making of this rally.

Smoke 'Fro